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PLAYLIST: BUSINESS IN DELAWAREFormer UD President Harker tours Wilmington | 0:42

Patrick Harker, former President of the University of Delaware, toured parts of Wilmington Tuesday afternoon as part of his new role as the President of the Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia. 7/11/17 Damian Giletto/The News Journal

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PLAYLIST: BUSINESS IN DELAWAREAstraZeneca Completes Sale of Fairfax Campus | 1:17

AstraZeneca sold its U.S. headquarters in Fairfax to Delle Donne & Associates in a deal valued at $50 million, but company officials insist the pharmaceutical giant is not going anywhere. Daniel Sato/The News Journal/WOCHIT

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PLAYLIST: BUSINESS IN DELAWAREChemours stops leak into NC river | 0:40

Chemours said it has captured the wastewater leaking a toxic chemical into a North Carolina River. 6/27/17 Jeff Mordock/The News Journal

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PLAYLIST: BUSINESS IN DELAWAREWork space for creators opens in Wilmington | 0:28

NextFab, a membership-based business, opened Wednesday in Wilmington and offers creators a place to make anything you want with tools ranging from a 3-D printer to wood cutting materials. 6/14/17 Damian Giletto/The News Journal

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PLAYLIST: BUSINESS IN DELAWARE90-year-old man continues full time work schedule | 0:57

Ralph Lashley, who recently turned 90, continues to work 40-50 hours a week at Shellhorn & Hill Inc. in Wilmington. 6/12/17 Damian Giletto/The News Journal

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PLAYLIST: BUSINESS IN DELAWAREILC Dover develops big plug with an even bigger job | 2:23

View of the new Resilient Tunnel Plug built by ILC Dover. The Resilient Tunnel Plug is capable of blocking tunnels during terrorist attacks and natural disasters. Jason Minto/The News Journal/USA TODAY

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PLAYLIST: BUSINESS IN DELAWAREBeach rental licenses fall in some towns | 0:42

Tourists may have a harder time finding a beach rental close to the ocean. Several coastal towns report the number of rental licenses are falling. Wochit

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PLAYLIST: BUSINESS IN DELAWAREFire & ice: funky coffee and ice cream drinks at the beach | 1:45

Mug & Spoon in Rehoboth Beach where they make monster milkshakes and funky coffee drinks. Jason Minto/The News Journal/USA TODAY

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PLAYLIST: BUSINESS IN DELAWAREDover Towne Center up for sale | 0:39

The Dover Towne Center is being offered for sale and could fetch as much as $25 million. Jeff Mordock/The News Journal/WOCHIT

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PLAYLIST: BUSINESS IN DELAWAREDolle’s prepared for 90th year at Rehoboth location | 0:49

Dolle’s prepared for 90th year at Rehoboth location Jason Minto/The News Journal/USA TODAY

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Last VideoNext Video

  • Former UD President Harker tours Wilmington

    Former UD President Harker tours Wilmington

  • AstraZeneca Completes Sale of Fairfax Campus

    AstraZeneca Completes Sale of Fairfax Campus

  • Chemours stops leak into NC river

    Chemours stops leak into NC river

  • Work space for creators opens in Wilmington

    Work space for creators opens in Wilmington

  • 90-year-old man continues full time work schedule

    90-year-old man continues full time work schedule

  • ILC Dover develops big plug with an even bigger job

    ILC Dover develops big plug with an even bigger job

  • Beach rental licenses fall in some towns

    Beach rental licenses fall in some towns

  • Fire & ice: funky coffee and ice cream drinks at the beach

    Fire & ice: funky coffee and ice cream drinks at the beach

  • Dover Towne Center up for sale

    Dover Towne Center up for sale

  • Dolle's prepared for 90th year at Rehoboth location

    Dolle’s prepared for 90th year at Rehoboth location

prototypes, parts, and the occasional marketing gimmick rather than mass production.

But the tide is turning and a Newark startup called DeLUX Engineering is working to push the boundaries of what 3-D printing can do in the fields of telecommunications, defense contracting and pharmaceuticals.

Formed in 2015 by a pair of ph.D. candidates at the University of Delaware and their advisor, the entrepreneurs already have landed more than $1.3 million in federal funding to turn their ideas into reality.

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“At DeLUX, we’re not looking to reproduce something that already exists using 3-D printing,” said Zachary Larimore, the company’s chief technology officer. “We’re trying to make things you simply can’t make any other way.”

So-called “subtractive” manufacturing is the traditional method of starting with a block of material and removing pieces until you are left with a final unit, such as fuel injector.

First developed in the mid-1980s, additive manufacturing uses what amounts to a digital blueprint that slices an image into thousands of horizontal layers. A 3-D printer then converts materials into physical reproduction of those successive layers – each a fraction of an inch thick – resulting in a solid three-dimensional object.

Larimore and Paul Parsons, DeLUX’s director of material research, honed their expertise with some of the more advanced uses for the technology while working for the Army Research Labs at Aberdeen Proving Ground in Maryland. The duo later reconnected once Parsons began pursuing his doctorate in material science and engineering at UD and Larimore was working to complete his doctorate in electrical engineering.

Together, they launched DeLUX with Mark Mirotznik, a UD electrical engineering professor and director of the university’s Electromagnetic Materials Laboratory.

Larimore, a 28-year-old Missouri native, is the hardware guy who is able to push the technical limits of a $300,000 printer the team rents from UD. Meanwhile, the 34-year-old Parsons, who hails from Milford, is developing new materials in a lab at the university’s DTP@STAR incubator that can expand the capabilities of what Larimore is able to print.

“We have very complementary skill sets and it turned out we were a little a head of everyone else,” Larimore said. “So we decided to work together to see what we could come up with.”

Last year, DeLUX won a $100,000 grant from the U.S. Department of Defense to develop a method for 3-D printing radar systems that could conform to a given volume. Their design then won them a two-year, $1 million grant to bring their proposal to fruition.

“Let’s say you have a Humvee or a missile and you want to add a radar guidance system but there isn’t much space left to put it,” Larimore explained. “We came up with a way to fit the electronics to the space you have available without radically altering the design.”

Gore is one of the largest privately held companies in the country with more than $3 billion in annual revenue.

“DeLUX is pretty far ahead of what other people are doing with additive manufacturing,” he said. “I would not be at all surprised to see them become very successful relatively quickly.”

Contact business reporter Scott Goss at (302) 324-2281, sgoss@delawareonline.com or on Twitter @ScottGossDel.

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